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June 25, 2010

Katharina Grosse Exhibition at Arken Museum, Denmark

Contemporary Art exhibition > Katharina Grosse
Contemporary Art exhibition > Denmark > Ishoj > ARKEN - Museum of Modern Art

Utopia: Katharina Grosse 
Hello Little Butterfly, I Love You What’s Your Name

ARKEN - Museum of Modern Art, Ishøj, Denmark

Through 7 November 2010

 

KATHARINA GROSSE, Hello Little Butterfly I Love You What's Your Name  

KATHARINA GROSSE, Hello Little Butterfly I Love You What's Your Name
Installation photo - Courtesy of ARKEN Museum, Ishøj

 

Copenhagen. 200 m3 of earth, several hundred litres of spray paint and two giant ellipses have changed ARKEN Museum of Modern Art’s 150 m long Art Axis beyond recognition. In KATHARINA GROSSEUTOPIA exhibition Hello Little Butterfly, I Love You What’s Your Name the mounds of earth hug the walls, several metres high, the ellipses stand like huge gates wedged between floor and ceiling, and the paint lies like colourful clouds everywhere. Going into the large gallery is like walking into a painting. This is the first time that the room is changed so significantly.

Since the late 1990s, the spray gun has been Katharina Grosse’s preferred tool. With that in her hand, she explodes painting’s boundaries. Vibrant clouds of paint float into the room – onto walls and floors, over sculptures, everyday objects and enormous mounds of earth. Grosse insists on art’s ability to transcend boundaries and expand our experience of the surroundings. Her installation at ARKEN builds a new universe in the room. A giant mural moves from the wall, onto the floor and over a huge mound of earth and the jagged, rocklike sculptures scattered around the room. In the middle of the paint, “missing paintings” open up like empty holes. The vibrant colours create atmospheric effects and illusions of new rooms which open in the room.

 

KATHARINA GROSSE, Hello Little Butterfly I Love You What's Your Name

KATHARINA GROSSE, Hello Little Butterfly I Love You What's Your Name
Installation photo - Courtesy of ARKEN Museum, Ishøj

 

The play with transformation is anticipated in the title she has chosen for her installation at ARKEN: Hello Little Butterfly, I Love You What’s Your Name – a poetic phrase that juxtaposes the raw concrete of the monumental room, and that points to the kernel of the utopian endeavour – the possibility of change. The Grosse exhibition is the second of ARKEN’s three-year UTOPIA exhibition series. Her work concerns the utopia as a non-place. A better, as yet non-existent place which only exists in our imagination. In Grosse’s installation we literally step into art’s imaginary universe. Her painting is a place where we may explore and dream on. Art and the aesthetic experience become a concrete model for the utopia’s non-place.

 

KATHARINA GROSSE, Hello Little Butterfly I Love You What's Your Name

KATHARINA GROSSE, Hello Little Butterfly I Love You What's Your Name
Installation photo - Courtesy of ARKEN Museum, Ishøj

 

Hello Little Butterfly, I Love You What’s Your Name is a constructive contrast. With her large installation, Katharina Grosse claims the established order does not have to be the way it is. Art can function as a basis for seeing everything differently. She wishes, in her own words, to “confront the viewer with other mental processes than the ones one is conditioned to in one’s everyday life.”

Katharina Grosse has created her installation especially for ARKEN’s Art Axis. Armed with spray guns she is executing a large, site-specific painting which binds together the installation’s many elements, anchoring paintings and sculptures in the concrete, physical room. Grosse never produces the same installation twice. Despite their striking, physical presence, her works are fleeting: Each installation is bound to the concrete room it is developed in, and when the exhibition at ARKEN is over, the installation will disappear.

 

KATHARINA GROSSE, The Other George , 2009

KATHARINA GROSSE, The Other George (2009) for Amagertorv in Copenhagen
Installation photo - Courtesy of ARKEN Museum, Ishøj

 

In connection with the UTOPIA project, Grosse has also developed the sculpture The Other George (2009) for Amagertorv in Copenhagen.

UTOPIA is supported by the Nordea-foundation.

 

UTOPIA: KATHARINA GROSSE
Hello Little Butterfly, I Love You What’s Your Name

12 December 2009 - 7 November 2010

ARKEN - Museum of Modern Art
Skovvej 100
2635 Ishøj
Denmark

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